2019 Transatlantic “Leading Edge” Award

2019 Transatlantic “Leading Edge” Award
May 13, 2019

Good evening, Everyone and, thank you, Ken.

I’d like to especially thank you, Michael Tatham, the Deputy Head of Mission to the United States for hosting this special gathering in such a beautiful setting.

At Lockheed Martin, we deeply appreciate the ongoing work and contributions of the Royal Aeronautical Society.

So, it is an honor to receive the 2019 Transatlantic “Leading Edge” Award from the Washington, D.C. branch.

And, I’m honored to accept this award on behalf of the 105,000 men and women of Lockheed Martin. It is certainly a tribute to their talent, hard work, and ingenuity.

At Lockheed Martin, we share the vision of the Royal Aeronautical Society that the science and engineering achievements of the aerospace industry have the power to transform the world and drive progress for all.

For more than 150 years, the Royal Aeronautical Society has effectively promoted and inspired thought, discovery, and achievement in humanity’s “quest to fly”.

And, we know from the lessons of history how important it is for free nations like the United States and the United Kingdom to maintain our leadership in the skies and in space.

We are proud to have played an important role in the “special relationship” between our two nations as we seek to strengthen global security.

For over 80 years, we have provided innovative aerospace and defense technologies for the United Kingdom.

And today, we continue to work closely with the British people and British industry to create innovations on the ‘leading edge’ on land, sea, in the air, in space, and in the cyber realm.

There is no better example of the strength of this relationship than the F-35 Lightning II, the world’s most advanced jet fighter.

From the very beginning of this extraordinary program, the United Kingdom has been a valued partner and innovator.

Over the past few years, the world has learned that the F-35 is truly an unrivalled aircraft, with a revolutionary combination of speed, stealth, sensor fusion, and processing power.

The F-35’s international success would not have been possible without the United Kingdom.

Today, 15 percent of each aircraft in our global F-35 fleet is built or supported by British companies. 

And with the international sales and expansion of the F-35 the program is also bringing economic benefits.

For instance, over its lifetime, the F-35 program is expected to support approximately 20,000 jobs at more than 500 companies across the United Kingdom alone.

Because of our achievements on this program and many others, we know first-hand the talent, innovation, and capabilities of the United Kingdom.

And, we are resolved, as a company, to support the UK’s technological, industrial, and educational goals.

As the Royal Aeronautical Society has recognized, the world faces a growing need for scientists and engineers – especially in the aerospace industry.

In the years ahead, it will be critical for government, industry, and academic institutions to come together to build the pipeline of talent going into science, technology, engineering, and math.

These STEM fields are the foundation for innovation, national security, and economic growth.

That’s why, at Lockheed Martin, we are focused on inspiring young people to pursue and continue studies in the STEM disciplines.

To this end, we support programs that engage students of all ages from primary school through university.

In the United Kingdom, some of these programs include internships and apprenticeships through various training providers and colleges.

These initiatives cover key skills including information technology, project management, and mechanical and electrical engineering.

By keeping the spirit of ingenuity “alive” in our young people we can ensure that free nations will have the talented men and women needed to meet the challenges of the 21st century.

Once again, I am proud to accept the Transatlantic Leading Edge Award and to share this special evening with my fellow honorees as we all work to advance the frontiers of flight in the United Kingdom, in the United States, and around the world.

Together, I am confident that we can fulfill our highest aspirations for a better and brighter future through innovation, security, and education.

Thank you for your kind attention.

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